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Florida Background Check and Gun Laws

Subject/Law
Long guns
Handguns
Relevant Statutes
Notes
State Permit to Purchase? No No None No
Firearm registration? No No None No
"Assault weapon" law? No No None No
Owner license required? No No None No
Carry permits issued? No Yes Chapter 790.06 Concealed carry only; no open carry allowed, even with permit
State Preemption of local restrictions? Yes Yes Chapter 790.33  
NFA weapons restricted? No No None  
Peaceable Journey laws? No No None Federal rules observed.

Florida is a "shall issue" state, and issues concealed carry permits to both residents and non-residents. Florida recognizes permits from any other state which recognizes Florida's permit, provided the non-resident individual is a resident of the other state and is at least 21 years old.
 
Vehicle carry without a permit is allowed either in a snapped holster in plain view, or when the firearm is concealed if the firearm is "securely encased". "Securely encased" means in a glove compartment, whether or not locked; snapped in a holster; in a gun case, whether or not locked; in a zippered gun case; or in a closed box or container which requires a lid or cover to be opened for access. (Note: this legal condition is not the same as "encased securely.") Vehicle carry without a permit is permitted when concealed even if it is not "securely encased" if the firearm is not "readily accessible". Vehicle carry on one's person inside a vehicle without a permit is not allowed.
 
Open carry when on foot in a public area is generally not permitted, but is allowed in certain circumstances, as defined in Florida statute 790.25(3). For example, open carry is permitted while hunting, fishing, or camping, or while target shooting, or while going to or from such activities. When hunting on private land, or on properties expressly approved for hunting by the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission or Division of Forestry, open carry is also permitted.
 
State preemption laws prohibit localities from regulating firearms, other than with regards to zoning laws (i.e., for restricting where gun sellers may locate their businesses.)
 
Firearm regulations are uniform throughout the state, and a carry permit is valid throughout the state, in all areas other than in a few specially-defined areas. These specially-defined prohibited areas include:

  • in or around specially-marked buildings/grounds (notably, mental hospitals and any hospitals with provisions to treat mental illness, where concealed carry is a felony even with a permit (F.S. 394.458). F.S 394.458 does state concealed carry is prohibited "unless authorized by law". Since F.S. 790.06(12) does not prohibit concealed carry in hospitals that treat mental illness by permit holders, it can be inferred that concealed carry with a permit is allowed. Caution is advised since there currently is no case law. In other words, no case has been referred to a Grand Jury nor has any person been tried for violating the law. One Florida resident was arrested but the charges were subsequently dropped after their attorney successfully argued the permit holder was excepted. Be advised each county's prosecutor may have a different opinion.
  • any place of nuisance 790.25(2)b3 & 823.05
  • Sheriff's Office,
  • Police Station,
  • Jail,
  • Prison,
  • Courthouse,
  • Polling Place,
  • any Governmental Judicial meeting,
  • any school or college,
  • lounges,
  • bars,
  • airports,
  • professional athletic event, and
  • any federal buildings or property.

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